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Selfish, Scared and Stupid: Stop Fighting Human Nature And Increase Your Performance, Engagement And Influence



Selfish, Scared and Stupid: Stop Fighting Human Nature And Increase Your Performance, Engagement And Influence

Kieran Flanagan, Dan Gregory

ISBN: 978-0-730-31279-6 August 2014 Wrightbooks 224 Pages


Appealing to humans' basic instincts to increase influence, buy-in and results

Survival of the species comes down to three basic instincts, say behavioural research strategists Dan Gregory and Kieran Flanagan—fear, self-interest and simplicity. These basic human behaviours come into play in all types of relationships, including those between businesses and customers. Selfish, Scared and Stupid: Stop fighting human nature and increase your performance, engagement and influence, demystifies these behaviours and examines the psychology behind why even the best ideas sometimes fail.

This book helps businesses design their organisations for reality rather than perfection, and also offers strategies to head off unprecedented levels of disengagement within, and outside, the business. It answers baffling questions around why the public sometimes fails to engage despite overwhelming data suggesting otherwise, why so many new products end up on clearance shelves and why so many great salespeople often fall short of their monthly targets.

  • Learn how the survival of the species plays into business, including delusionary realities and the reasons ideas can fail
  • Discover how to offer customers strategic rewards, thereby making the buying process more attractive to selfish natures
  • Examine the link between fear and the unknown, including strategies for quelling fears and turning them into action
  • Learn to use a simple mindset to create low-involvement products, helping appeal to instinct and making products hard to resist

This provocative book is built on the idea that businesses must return to a more human engagement methodology in order to succeed. It is an informative read for anyone interested in improving influence, growing business reach, improving sales figures or understanding the complexities of human behaviour.

About the authors xi

Acknowledgements xiii

Introduction xv

Part I: We are all selfish, scared and stupid

1 A matter of survival 3

2 The Happy Delusion 17

3 Why failure happens 31

Part II: Think selfish

4 Tell me WIIFM 51

5 Offer a reward 67

6 Make it enjoyable 81

Part III: Think scared

7 Flip the fear 97

8 Link it to the known 111

9 Show them they’re not alone 125

Part IV: Think stupid

10 Make it simple 139

11 Make it easy (lazy) 155

12 Make it hard not to 169

Selfish, scared and stupid in the real world 183

The Impossible Institute™ 189

Index 191